World News – AU – Victorian government announces $ 3 billion increase in public schools

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The Victorian public education system will receive a $ 3 billion increase in the state budget Tuesday after Prime Minister Daniel Andrews announced a program to build and arm the state schools.

« Our system only works best when we make sure the quality of the buildings matches the quality of teaching and learning, and that is exactly what this budget can do, » said Andrews, announcing funding at Thornbury High School on Tuesday morning.

Mr Andrews said the increase in funding would also double the number of special needs students who receive one-on-one attention.

« The point here is that every child has every chance, that every school is supported. Any parent can make that choice if they want to send their children there, « he said.

Mr Andrews said building new schools and upgrading buildings would create more than 6,000 jobs.

The government is expected to release the state budget on Tuesday afternoon, with an expected focus on capital work to help the state recover from the pandemic.

The school funding will be increased after announcements on an airport rail link, faster Geelong rail traffic, the S-Bahn loop and social housing.

« [This is] the largest investment in education in schooling the state has ever seen. It’s pretty extraordinary, « said Secretary of Education and Deputy Prime Minister James Merlino.

Mr. Merlino said the $ 3 billion figure included $ 1. 1 billion announced earlier this year and $ 1. 9 new projects.

« Of the $ 1. 9 billion there is 1 dollar. 28 billion for 162 upgrades in our state, « he said.

About $ 350 million of the allocated upgrade budget will be used for 54 upgrades in rural and regional state schools, Merlino said.

An additional $ 388 million would be allocated specifically for upgrades to 39 different specialized disability schools.

A total of 11 new schools would be built by 2026, including a vertical elementary school in North Melbourne, he said.

Mr. Merlino said the multi-billion dollar investment would be 22. Create 700 additional student places at state schools.

« We are still seeing massive growth in enrollments and that has been a challenge across our government. We have invested every year and we are now ahead of that curve of this [population] growth, « he said.

Some of the schools that are expected to benefit from the construction of new locations are Kyneton High School in the Macedon Ranges and Frankston Special Development Special School.

Mr Merlino said while there would still be annual funding for non-government schools, Tuesday’s huge investment announcement was about leveling the playing field between independent Catholic and public schools.

Mr Merlino said the Beaumaris approach shows how the government would handle the allocation of funds.

« We made a significant investment in a brand new school in Beaumaris – Beaumaris Secondary – and before that parents felt their only choice was going the private [school] route, » he said.

« We work in partnership with Catholic and independent schools, but the point is to give parents a choice wherever they live in metropolitan Melbourne, Victoria area – a choice for quality public education. « 

Mr Merlino said the government’s 2014 commitment to provide annual funding for low-fee Catholic independent schools will continue.

The announcement came after The Age announced Tuesday that it would be abolishing Victoria’s professional diploma and amalgamating it with the VCE to allay the lingering stigma that it is intended solely for non-academic children.

The Victorian Applied Learning Certificate – the VCE alternative, approved by more than 25 years in the past year. 000 upper secondary school students – will expire as a separate qualification from 2023 and will be abolished by 2025.

A review of professional and applied learning pathways in secondary schools found that VCAL had an image problem. Photo credit: Jim Rice

Instead, industry-oriented subjects will be included in the VCE, with students being given more freedom to combine academic and professional paths.

This means that before the start of the 11th. No longer have to choose between VCE and VCAL during the school year.

The overhaul of the 11. and 12. Class will cost $ 38 million – which will be included in the state budget on Tuesday – and will provide part of the funding for hiring new « Jobs, Skills and Pathways Coordinators » in state schools.

Tim Pallas, Daniel Andrews, Victoria State Government, School, James Merlino

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Ref: https://www.theage.com.au

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